Sunday, June 8, 2008

Ralph Mouth

Here's a place I go a lot. Okay, almost every day that it's open:

The spot

Sometimes I like company when I snack, so I think most of my neighborhood friends are familiar with text messages from me saying things like, "Want to get a Ralph's?" and, "Want anything from Ralph's?" and "Ralph's!" It's not always my idea, either. I get lured in by fellow snackers, too. There's nothing more pleasant than a walk to Ralph's with your closest friends on a steamy summer evening. Which is not to say I don't go there when it's afternoon or starting to rain.

At Ralph's Famous Italian Ices, depending on what's in stock (and as long as you go there while it's open; it closes in the fall and winter), you can have:

1. A Water ice
Menu 1
[my picks: sour cherry, cherry, lemon, and strawberry margarita. Moss will probably tell you to get mango every time. It's great, too.]

2. A Drink
3. An Ice Cream
Menu 2
[I like the peanut butter blast smoothie. Dan (who would like to be known as Jean Valjean in these posts) enjoyed Crazy Coconut ice cream.]

4. A Creme Ice
Menu 3
[My go-to flavors: peanut butter (p.b.) cookie dough, chocolate peanut butter, orange and creme, peppermint patty, chocolate cookies & creme, chocolate hazelnut, and strawberry cheesecake. Dave has enjoyed birthday cake and rainbow cookie, among others].

or 5. A Sundae!
Menu 4
[I haven't been able to tear myself away from the creme ice to try one of these.]

As you may be able to tell by the list of favorite flavors shared above, I most often get a creme ice. Scratch that. I typically get a small peanut butter cookie dough creme ice, please, even though the number of pieces of cookie dough have varied from one (which was disappointing) to a more reasonable 8-10. Still, no matter how much cookie dough is in there, the density and silk of the peanut butter creme ice is perfect.

PB Cookie Dough

I'm also a big fan of the flavors based in the chocolate creme ice, which is richer than I'd expected without being overwhelmingly sweet.

Aside: Anyone know what makes a creme ice a "creme ice," and not an ice cream?

Both the creme ices and water ices are full of flavor and few I've tried taste overly artificial. Most varieties' textures hover in a pleasing otherworld somewhere between icy and smooth.

Now let's compare! Although I enjoyed a nice lemon water ice from an Uncle Louie G's near Prospect Park yesterday, I found the the texture, flavor and portion size (at least in comparing the small cups, which are $2 at both locations) to be inferior to the one I had today at Ralph's on Graham Ave. Uncle Louie G's fine-grained ice seemed more reliant on syrup and less cooling/refreshing to my system. Ralph's lemon water ice was like a scoop of fluffy, flavor-enhanced snow. Also, having eaten my samples on these two consecutive 90-degrees-and-then-some days (each day at around 3:00 pm), I can almost-scientifically declare that the Uncle Louie G's lemon water ice melts far more quickly (at least it seemed to) and completely into sticky lemon water.

Bonus -- at Ralph's, you also get a spoon!

PB Cookie Dough

On the evening I took these pictures, I chose to consume my standby (once again, that's a small peanut butter cookie dough creme ice, as pictured for a second time above). The light was fading, but I also managed to grab a grainy photo of the employee who helped my day end so deliciously:


She was great. I know it might be the sugar talking, but everybody who works at Ralph's is quite reasonably personable. And, while I know it would be bad for their business, still I appreciate that they never point and laugh and say, "Weren't you just here a little while ago?" Which is nice of them.

Ralph's is at 357 Graham Ave (ever so close to the Graham Ave. L train stop and not far from the G at Lorimer/Metropolitan) in Brooklyn, NY.

p.s. There's also a B43 bus stop just up/down the block.


Mechanic said...

thank you for turning me on to the peanut butter cookie cream ice.

i've taken my favorite four year old here, its heaven watching him spend 10 minutes deciding what to get, completely overwhelmed by the choices...

let's plan a field trip to the "lemon ice king of corona" in queens!

Jennette said...

I do like field trips!

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